Mediation is a process that requires both scientific and artistic skills. Lawyers or mediators need to be trained in how to facilitate communications between people who are in dispute while remaining impartial. Choosing an effective mediator is the best way to reach a binding agreement with your spouse and avoid going to court. Although there are many qualities and skills that make a good mediator, the top characteristics below are the most important for success.
Essential Characteristics Effective Family Mediators Have
1 – Trustworthiness
If both spouses find the mediator to be trustworthy, they are more likely to open up about the issues in dispute. If the mediator is seen as trustworthy and can provide support, the spouses will be more likely to compromise. They will have an open feeling of safety and an understanding that the mediator is not taking sides and has their best interests in mind. In family mediation, it is essential that the mediator be independent, objective and neutral. Each spouse should feel free to express their emotions in the mediation sessions.
2 – Effective Communication Skills
Mediators must be able to interact effectively with the parties during mediated sessions. Effective communication skills are essential for mediators to understand the issues of the couple and build relationships. These skills also help them understand how to help the couple communicate more effectively with each other. Mediators need to be good listeners with the ability to maintain focus on the issues at hand at all times.
3 – Perceptive
Mediators must be able to read the emotions and feelings of the parties. They must be able to sense when the parties are ready to compromise and when they are not. A skilled mediator will direct the process in a way that gets both parties to resolve issues with a sense of fairness, mutual respect and dignity.
4 – Impartial
Mediators are required to be impartial,which can be difficult when one spouse needs to be the winner and the other needs to be the loser. The mediator must be able to see the situation from both perspectives and help the couple avoid starting a dispute over issues that are not in dispute.
5 – Respectful
The most effective mediators treat all parties with respect. They do not judge or criticize. Good family mediators know they have a limited role, and they do not try to influence the outcome of the mediation.
6 – Flexible
Mediators must be flexible and able to handle unexpected situations. They must be able to help the parties make decisions without getting tied up in their emotions. If one side becomes angry or emotional, the mediator must not allow it to hijack the mediation. Mediators must be able to redirect the discussion toward the issues at hand.
The ideal mediator is a compassionate listener who has strong communication skills. They are able to offer suggestions to help the parties reach a settlement. A skilled mediator will be able to adjust to changing situations and emotional outbursts and will direct the process in a way that helps the parties understand each other’s needs and reach a mutually acceptable agreement.
If you are looking for a family lawyer or mediator, come to Dreyer and Associates Lawyers LLP. We are committed to preserving the best interests of families across the Fraser Valley and the Lower Mainland. We have a diverse array of experience across family law, wills and estates, and residential conveyancing, although family law continues to be our focus.